Widgets Magazine

Nov 8, 2013

Women's Volleyball Tournament

I'm pretty sure I've talked plenty about the fact that I am in charge of Women's Volleyball in my stake. We started (and ended) our tournament dreams today.

Sports in the LDS church is an interesting thing. Over the years it has gotten a bad reputation for not having very good sportsmanship. Injuries have been plentiful and considering we are all supposed to be brothers and sisters in the gospel, there have been some not very nice things said.

The church is trying hard to change that perception! Our tournaments are still a region-wide (or actually we call it a Coordinating Council now) bracket, but it is all about just playing games. There are no prizes, not even t-shirts. Of course there are always bragging rights, but that is about it. For me it is always about just playing one more game. That is why I was pretty upset with myself tonight.

We arrived 20 minutes early, just like we were supposed to. We had 10 women from my roster show up, including one who hadn't played with us before. I quickly penciled her in at the bottom of the list. I knew she was in our stake since she played basketball with us a few times last year. We tried to explain to her the way our team typically did things, but there wasn't much time and soon we were right in the thick of things.

Ever since I have played volleyball with the grownups, we have designated the middle front person to be the setter and they get the second hit. It's the way we have all been conditioned to play and we are just used to the pass, the set, and then the hit. Unfortunately, this poor girl had not played that way and it didn't go well for us when she was on the middle front.

I found myself saying, "You're the second hit!" in a voice that in retrospect was not as Christ-like as maybe I should have been. I was devastated when she decided to leave early even though I apologized profusely and begged her to stay. It really wasn't her fault, she had just not played with us before and old habits are hard to break in the excitement of tournament play.

Needless to say, we did not survive the pool play. With four teams playing tonight, only two would move on to the actual tournament, and after 6 games, I was more than ready to go home. It didn't help that we played the best team last and they totally trounced us. I think the score of the final game was 25 - 10. It was a nice dose of humility that I probably desperately needed at that point.

I tell myself all the time that over the years I have become less and less competitive, but I think I'm going to finally have to admit that my name is Sandy.

And I still like to win.

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